Wayne State College

Federal Work Study

What is Federal Work Study?

The Federal Work Study (FWS) Program provides job opportunities for undergraduate students to earn money to help offset educational expenses for the academic year. This program is partially supported through federal funding. A variety of positions are available, including within Conn Library, many academic departments, and America Reads, a program that partners with Wayne Elementary School to provide community service opportunities.

How will I be paid?

These jobs work much like any other part-time job opportunity. If you are hired for a position, you will be paid biweekly throughout the school year as you earn. Your Federal Work Study Award will not be applied to your bill at the beginning of the semester; remember to think of it separately from other financial aid, such as grants, scholarships, and loans.

Your first paycheck will be available within one month from when you begin work and you will receive a paycheck every two weeks. The pay schedule and additional payroll information is available from the Human Resources Office.

How do I qualify?

These funds are offered by the college based on financial need and the availability of funds. You must complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) to determine if you qualify. If you did not receive a Federal Work Study Eligibility Offer and you are interested, reach out to Student Financial Services to see if you could qualify.

If you qualify, you will see Federal Work Study Eligibility in your financial aid offer. Accepting this offer will lead to you receiving a Work Study Permit and instructions for next steps via your WSC email account. This process begins in the middle of the summer before your award eligibility starts.

What is a Work Study Permit?

Your Work Study Permit will be emailed to your WSC email address. It lets the person hiring you know you qualify for FWS. When hired for a FWS position, you will take your Work Study Permit to the hiring manager. You will then take it with you to complete paperwork with Human Resources to begin employment.

What paperwork is needed?

Besides your Work Study Permit, Human Resources will have employment forms for you to complete. For this you will need originals of documents to verify eligibility to work in the United States (either an unexpired U.S. or foreign passport, or a combination of your driver’s license and either your Social Security card or birth certificate). You will also need a voided check to sign up for direct deposit of your paycheck.

How do I find a position?

Search Handshake for jobs that include "Work Study" in the title. Apply through Handshake and complete your Work Study Permit if hired for the position. You can also reach out to departments you may be interested in working with to inquire about openings they may have.

When can I work?

Your Work Study Permit begins on the first day of the fall semester and expires on the final day of the spring semester, or your last day of enrollment, whichever is earlier. You must complete employment paperwork with Human Resources before you can begin working.

Once hired, you will work with your supervisor to develop a schedule. You may work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week unless otherwise authorized by Human Resources. If you work fewer hours than awarded, that time is lost. It is recommended to monitor and periodically check in with your supervisor on the status of your earnings to reach your full award potential.

What if I can’t find a position?

Federal Work Study positions are limited; however, there are plenty of other on-campus employment opportunities. These can also be found through Handshake. The only difference between these jobs and Federal Work Study positions is where the funding comes from. If you secure a non-work study position instead, your FWS award will go unused, but you will still be paid bi-weekly for the hours you work.

Who do I contact with questions?

For questions, contact Student Financial Services by phone at 1-800-228-9972 (ext. 7229) or by email at [email protected].